I firmly believe that you only become any good in this industry if you work with and learn from the best people. (By the way, if you haven’t got great people around you, leave.) I’ve been fortunate to work with many truly exceptional people who have inevitably taught me everything I know. Right up at the top of that list is Jim Carroll, former chairman of Bartle Bogle Hegarty and an exceptional account planner. But Jim was much more than just a great strategist. He helped me (and many others) on every aspect of the ad business – from handling tricky clients through to how to push for the very best work, how to communicate to the agency through to managing all kinds of talent issues. And all of this was done in his incomparable positive, constructive, engaging tone of voice.
Jim has the most eclectic range of cultural influences of anybody I know
Jim now writes a weekly blog of which I’m an avid reader. It’s, of course, a joy to hear his voice through his wonderful writing, but I recommend his blog to you mainly because it does the one thing that our industry never does enough of.
It brings outside influence and thinking to bear on what we do in marketing communications. We spend far too much of our time looking inwards for the answers when we should spend more time looking out. It’s a curiosity to me that an industry whose value is based on connecting with the population spends so little time actually working out how to do it. We are paid to have our finger on the pulse of society and, at our best, should be helping to lead and shape British culture.
Jim has the most eclectic range of cultural influences of anybody I know.
In his blog, he elegantly uses his observations of what is happening around us in culture to help us shape how we work in our industry. So whether it’s a film, a play, music, fashion or even his beloved West Ham, Jim can always find inspiration to help make us and our work better. As Jim himself would often say: "Nice one. Carry on."